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Though it’s hard to, we really should try to ignore Hank Steinbrenner

Feb 22, 2011, 8:15 AM EDT

New York Yankees general partner Steinbrenner talks with reporters at the team's spring training camp in Tampa

Some great points from Ken Davidoff this morning regarding Hank Steinbrenner running off at the mouth yesterday. The upshot: though it’s hard to ignore what Hank Steinbrenner says because of his name and the sometimes outrageous nature of his remarks, we really can’t give them any weight beyond their entertainment value because the dude really has no power whatsoever in the Yankees organization.

I thought about this last night when a commenter said something about how Hank should have “kept this stuff in-house.”  Actually, there is no “in-house” for this stuff. If Hank said it behind closed doors it would still be of no moment. No team executive with any power at all would actually criticize his star player for “building mansions.”  In this, Hank’s ravings are no different than a fan hanging out with his buddies or a caller on a talk radio show. But he has the name and he has the office and he looks and carries himself way more like Big Stein than his brother Hal does, so we all understandably flock to it.

I don’t think it’s possible to ignore Hank Steinbrenner, if for no other reason than it would be kind of rude, after all of this time, for the beat writers to treat him as though he’s totally unimportant. He is notable in that way celebrities who don’t do anything are notable and nothing will ever change that. When he talks people will hold up the microphone, and I have no problem at all with this. But unless there’s a palace coup and Hank truly takes over, our analysis of Hank Steinbrenner’s comments should always end at “heh, that’s pretty funny/obnoxious/bizarrely insightful.”  At no point should it extend to “what are the implications of what he said for the Yankees.”

As Davidoff notes, today people will ask Derek Jeter and Brian Cashman about what Hank said.  They’ll dutifully respond because they’re professionals. My guess is the response will be akin to “he’s Mr. Steinbrenner and he can say what he likes and we understand that.”  But they know and we should all realize that there is no actual significance to anything Hank Steinbrenner said as it relates to the Yankees.

  1. paintan8 - Feb 22, 2011 at 8:26 AM

    Some of us actually do ignore anything this asshat says. None of it is newsworthy so it should be easy. Oh, this is a site owned by NBC. NBC is located in New York. Guess you’ll have no choice huh?

  2. largebill - Feb 22, 2011 at 8:36 AM

    I suppose that next you’re going to tell us that Paris Hilton doesn’t make management decisions for the hotel chain, huh?

  3. proudlycanadian - Feb 22, 2011 at 9:04 AM

    Hank is only good for comedy relief. His brother Hal seems to be much more intelligent.

  4. phukyouk - Feb 22, 2011 at 9:19 AM

    Hank is going to undo everything his father has done. hes.just.plain.awful

  5. BC - Feb 22, 2011 at 9:43 AM

    Heck no, let it rip, Hank!! I missed the years when George was infirm and the blustery statements came to a halt. We need more bluster!

    • Utley's Hair - Feb 22, 2011 at 11:45 AM

      “We need more bluster!”

      Said the Mutts fan living in the winter wonderland that is Connecticut.

    • Utley's Hair - Feb 22, 2011 at 3:18 PM

      By the way, BC, any special plans for Drew’s birthday today?

  6. jetersusedjersey - Feb 22, 2011 at 10:14 AM

    I love Hank being Hank! We need more crazy owners!

  7. yankeesfanlen - Feb 22, 2011 at 10:24 AM

    Didn’t even bother yesterday because everyone had their panties in such a bunch.
    What does it take to convince people that this is the way the Yankees are run, and it’s no different now except a new set of characters? Read some history with Dan Topping, Del Webb, George Weiss and Casey Stengel.
    We just like our Universe this way with shifting priorities and allegances, good-cop bad-cop, and seething intrigue.
    Let’s not fall into the trap of a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

  8. mrfloydpink - Feb 22, 2011 at 10:46 AM

    Hank Steinbrenner = Fredo Corleone.

    • bigharold - Feb 22, 2011 at 11:52 AM

      He wants some respect?

      When does he go fishing on the lake?

  9. Utley's Hair - Feb 22, 2011 at 11:57 AM

    I think someone should be posted with Hank at all times, so we can get even MORE coverage of and quotes from Pugsley Addams Steinbrenner. That would never fail to be either the most inane or hilarious posts around.

  10. jh0088 - Feb 22, 2011 at 12:29 PM


  11. mattymatty - Feb 22, 2011 at 4:39 PM

    I was going to write how I absolutely agree, Hank is nothing more than a figurehead, but then something occurred to me. Was it really Hal Steinbrenner who spearheaded the signing of Rafael Soriano? That signing just stinks of Hank’s desperation and over-reaction. And if Hank did have input into that deal then he isn’t just a figurehead.

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